Is It Possible to Surgically Change the Distance Between an Adult's Eyes?

Specifically, to make eyes further apart. If so, is this something that could be done for cosmetic purposes only? Thanks for any information.

Doctor Answers 3

Surgery to increase the Distance between the Eyes

Increasing the distance between the eye sockets requires complex craniofacial surgery in which the eye sockets are cute with an oscillating saw and moved sideways where they are stabilized with plates and screws. This surgery is usually used for reconstructing severe injuries, complex birth defects or even complex tumor removals. They are associated with a high complication rate and i do not know of any craniofacial surgeon who would offer it to a patient wishing  a cosmetic improvement.

Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Yes it is possible.

Dear 2040

What is involved is craniofacial surgery.  The bones that surround the eyes are cut taking take to protect the vital nerves that travel through these bones.  The brain is lifted because the bone roof above the eyes also makes the bony floor that supports the brain.  Then the orbits are repositioned relative to the rest of the facial skeleton.  I hope this description makes it clear that this is one of the most complex surgeries performed.  Due to the difficulty and inherent risks including blindness and death, this surgery is only performed when facial abnormalities are so severe that the individual can't interact with others.  This is not a cosmetic surgery in other words but a tremendously complex undertaking that is perform to give someone a more human appearance.

Having said that, occasionally individuals have this complain and the issue turns out to be body dysmorphic disorder, a self esteem issue, or even prominent epicanthal folds that make it look like the eyes are closer together than they are.  

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Increasing Distance between Eyes

Yes, it is possible to increase the distance between the orbits (eye sockets).

BUT, I would certainly NOT recommend this surgery for aesthetic reasons. The procedure is complex and involves bone cuts within the skull base and therefore, in my mind, it is unreasonable to do this.

Frank P. Fechner, MD
Worcester Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.